This isn’t a sponsored post.
BrumHour was invited to the press night of School of Rock by The Alexandra.
For Brum Radio’s Interval Theatre, Staffordshire actor Jake Sharp talks about playing the iconic role of Dewey Finn for the School of Rock 2021/22 UK Tour.
By Dave Massey twitter.com/BrumHour
This production contains manipulative behaviour and several instances of mildly strong language.
Review: School of Rock at The Alexandra
Music by Andrew Lloyd Webber, lyrics by Glenn Slater, book by Julian Fellowes, Directed by Laurence Connor
⭐⭐⭐⭐⭐ – Brilliant!
Soon after Dewey Finn (Jake Sharp) has been thrown out of the band he himself created, he takes a phone call for his housemate Ned (Matthew Rowland) who is a substitute teacher, making good money. Posing as Ned, Dewey takes up a role at a posh New York school, where the privileged pupils have as much to teach him about life as he is attempting to teach them. He soon discovers a shared love of music and in turn a competition that they can enter: Battle of the Bands.
This was a massively fun production with lots of great performances to enjoy. I’ve never seen the film School of Rock myself (SHOCKING I KNOW!) but I knew plenty about it. Jake Sharp switches between antihero and hero with ease as our leading man and he particularly shines when dealing with the talented young cast playing the school pupils. A mixture of topical references older comments let you know the dialogue has been refreshed for this tour and there is a lot of energy right there on the stage.
The set consists of many sliding panels to create the school, its classrooms, Dewey’s bedroom, a dive bar and the home of the competition. There are plenty of bright arena style lights for the competition sections too.
A rotating cast of young people star as the pupils and tonight’s standout performers for me were Keira Laver as Summer who proves that being a band manager can be very rewarding and Angel Lucero as Tomika who adds layers to her shy character who is hiding a huge voice. The fact that the rest of the class play their own instruments is just astonishing when you hear the music.
Where School of Rock scores best is its ability to explore each of these characters and their vulnerability with posture and snippets of dialogue and the songs drive the story without feeling forced.
Anyone who has spent more than a few weeks from the past two years unwillingly on their sofa will realise the importance of getting up and doing something to change your own world. A brilliant production, School of Rock is an empowering two hours and fifteen minutes (Plus interval) with a lot to say for itself.
School of Rock is at The Alexandra until 5th February 2022. The UK and Ireland tour currently continues until August 2022. See the dates here: uktour.schoolofrockthemusical.com/tour-dates